North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper closed restaurants and bars for dine-in customers and waived requirements for unemployment benefits Tuesday following increased numbers of coronavirus cases across the state during the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to the governor, the changes will go into affect starting at 5 p.m. on March 17. These locations will be limited to take out and delivery service only.
“I recognize this decision will cost people their jobs, so this order also brings them some relief. Today I am taking down some of the barriers to unemployment benefits in response to this unprecedented health crisis,” Gov. Cooper said.
The changes to the unemployment process include:
- The removal of the one-week waiting period to apply for unemployment benefits for those workers who lose their jobs.
- The removal of the requirement that those who are unemployed must look for working during the this time when many businesses are closed.
- It will allows employees who lose their jobs or, in certain cases have their hours reduced due to COVID-19 issues, to apply for unemployment benefits.
- It waives the requirement that part of the application process must be done in person and instead will allow the applicants to be interviewed online or by phone.
- Businesses with workers seeking unemployment will not have losses counted towards them
The governor also informed the public that additional federal relief is being worked on to help business owners and employees.
Gov. Roy Cooper just tweeted an image on Twitter that says all North Carolina restaurants and bars are to close for dine-in due to the coronavirus. The tweet goes on to say that effective 5pm on March 17th, all restaurants and bars will close for dine-in customers. Takeout and delivery orders can continue, according to Cooper.
The executive order will also include an expansion of unemployment insurance to help North Carolina workers affected by COVID-19.